The Quezon City government through Mayor Joy Belmonte has started the distribution of 1.2 million facemasks and 300,000 face shields to its indigent residents from the city’s 142 barangays.

The distribution of face masks and shields is ongoing. Among those who will receive the face masks and shields are vendors, TODA drivers and senior citizens.

“We are giving out more face masks and face shields especially to our indigent residents who cannot afford to buy, so that hopefully we can reduce the number of health protocol violators,” she stressed.

Mayor Joy Belmonte has expressed her concern over the large number of health protocol violators who were warned or fined from among the vulnerable sectors. She said that as the guidelines for arrest with detention are being finalized by the PNP, Quezon City will be intensifying its campaign to warn or fine those who are seen not wearing face masks or those wearing them improperly. At present seniors, children or minors, and those who temporarily lowered their masks to eat or drink receive warnings. Fines are imposed on other violators through Ordinance Violation Receipts (OVRs) that can be paid within a reasonable period of time.

“We will exercise maximum tolerance and enforce our local ordinances in the meantime. As much as possible we want to avoid detaining them because we lack space in our detention facilities and the virus could easily spread in enclosed spaces,” Mayor Belmonte said.

“Only those who resist, defy or assault enforcers will be detained,” she added.

Based on data from the QCPD, a total of 825 individuals were arrested from May 6 to 5:00 am of May 11 for violating the city’s ordinance on proper wearing of face mask and face shield. Around 7,600 were warned, while 7,886 were fined.